Conor McGregor has one of the most lavish luxury watch collections on the planet, but unlike many watch collectors, he’s fairly cavalier about when and where he wears them.
From aggressive workouts while wearing his fragile $1 million Jacob & Co. dress watch to jetskiing with his diamond-encrusted Rolex, the outspoken Irish MMA champ really doesn’t give a f*ck about the manufacturer’s recommendations when it comes to appropriate timepiece usage. But his latest act of horological hubris might have finally made the penny drop.
Invited to throw the ceremonial first pitch at a baseball game between the Chicago Cubs and Minnesota Twins, ‘The Notorious’ stepped up to the mound wearing a hefty rose gold Patek Philippe Nautilus Chronograph, which he’s apparently broken due to the intensity of his curveball.
The photo of the pitch, which you can see above, is almost cartoonish: the watch was so loose on McGregor’s wrist that it ricocheted out like a rubber band as he goes to throw. The pitch completely missed, too, leading many online to ridicule McGregor, comparing his terrible attempt to rapper 50 Cent’s legendarily bad first pitch back in 2014.
It underlines an important point that many watch buyers don’t fully appreciate: you should never play sports like baseball while wearing a mechanical watch, as it’s a sure-fire way to break it.
Mechanical watches might be able to withstand intense air or water pressure fluctuations and still keep reliable time, but exposing them to a quick, intense spike in G-forces like those your wrist endures during a baseball pitch is more than enough to cook one. (Conor is left-handed and was wearing his Patek on his left hand, which is probably why he damaged it.) Other sports that are likely to damage a watch for similar reasons include boxing, darts, tennis or surfing.
It’s also true for golf swings, which is why it was such a big deal when Richard Mille came out with the RM 055 Manual Winding Bubba Watson signature model for the namesake American pro golfer – a mechanical watch that could withstand the shock of a PGA Tour-winning swing.
As for the commentary online about the pitch – especially the comparison with 50 Cent’s – it clearly got up McGregor’s nose, as he went on a legendary rant on Instagram about the whole thing.
“The audacity to compare mine with this piss! Picture to picture alone buries this. Mine, bar the accuracy, was the most powerful and fastest first pitch of any of these other athletes/artists over the years. No comparison. Smoke them up and down that Forbes I do. Get Messi over. Smoked. Cris. Smoked. Federer. Doubled. All-time most power! Put me in the Wrigley Hall of Fame for that rocket launch…”
“The gold bar [that was my] Patek almost came flying off me it was that fast and powerful. I’d take it back to Patek Philippe for adjusting but this watch is now discontinued. A rare. I bought [it] for $80k at Weir & Sons of Ireland and today it is worth close to $500k. And going up.”
“50 has a nice Hublot, too. [A] Big Bang. Small bucks, 50 Cent. One has power. One is the director of media relations for some show called Power. You know what it is.”
[Video] Check out some of Conor McGregor’s other outrageous watches below
Jeez, there’s a lot to unpack there.
Braggadocio aside, if he actually bought the watch for ‘only’ $80k, that means it’s actually been a rather good investment. While $500k is a bit of an exaggeration, the watch has indeed significantly appreciated, with most examples going for around US$300k (we’re assuming he’s talking US dollars).
Not sure how much you’d get for a damaged one, though…